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3:01 PM on 04.08.2010  

Ono-san hit me!

Yesterday was a Super Street Fighter IV event in Hamburg, Germany. Capcom invited press and some players from the German community to meet Yoshinori Ono, the producer of the game. Of course I went there too.

This happened:


I played a match against him and won. (Actually he let me win, because he is such a nice guy.)   read


1:03 PM on 03.12.2010  

Pikachu


Pikachu (ピカチュウ Pikachū?) is one of the fictional species of Pokémon creatures from the Pokémon media franchise—a collection of video games, anime, manga, books, trading cards, and other media created by Satoshi Tajiri. As do all Pokémon, Pikachu fight other Pokémon in battles central to the anime, manga, and games of the series. Pikachu is among the most recognizable Pokémon, largely because a Pikachu is a central character in the Pokémon anime series. Pikachu is widely considered the most popular Pokémon, is regarded as the official mascot of the Pokémon franchise, and has become an icon of Japanese culture in recent years.

In the Pokémon franchise, Pikachu are often found in houses, forests, plains, and occasionally near mountains, islands, and electrical sources (such as power plants), on most continents throughout the fictional world. As an Electric-type Pokémon, Pikachu can store electricity in its cheeks and release it in lightning-based attacks.

[Via Wikipedia]


Also pikachu hat is glorious.

[embed]166736:28188[/embed]
Also this.   read


6:42 PM on 12.17.2009  

428 - The greatest experiment in non-linear story telling


December 2008 the Sega released a Chunsoft developed visual Novel for the Nintendo Wii. Surprisingly the game was loved by game critics in Japan with Famitsu giving it a perfect score of 40/40. Sadly that was the only news about the game to reach the west. In September 2009 the game was ported to the PSP and the PlayStation 3 and during my trip to Japan this summer I picked up the game.

The game starts really simple with a single storyline. Like in most other visual novels you can make choices at certain points and determine the outcome of the story line, but no matter what you do after about 10-20 minutes the story line ends with a BAD END. But this isn't the end of the game, instead of going back and changing your choices, you can switch to another storyline with a different main character. With the choices you make in the second storyline you can change the fate of the first character and avert the BAD END.


Also at some points in a story line, you will be stopped by a KEEP OUT sign. To make this sign disappear, you have to advance in another story line until you spot a certain keyword and jump via the hint function to the other story line.

The game is divided in episodes and you have to reach the TO BE CONTINUED screen with all characters. If one character makes it there but another one ends with a BAD END you have to change something. The first episode keeps it rather simple with only 2 parallel story lines, but later you have up to five different characters, that all influence each other. To make things easier for the player, you can read a hint after a BAD END, that will hopefully tell you what choices you will have to change.

Without the jumping and changing different story lines, the game would be just a simple well-written novel (There is also a novel version of the game released in book form in Japan), but with the unique features of a game the story telling gets completely different. Of course there are parts, that mainly focus on just reading, but other times it is more like a puzzle to not end in a BAD END. What makes it even more fun, is the fact that most BAD ENDs are actually either quite funny or at least interesting for the story as a whole. Questions like "What would have happened if the cop went to marry his girlfriend and become a farmer instead of solving this case?" get answered this way. For completionists there are 85 endings to be found in the game.


Even after finishing the game there are two bonus scenarios and a hidden scenario to be found in the game. One of the bonus scenario is a really cute heartwarming story of the little sister, who is in a hospital, of one of the main characters. The other one is the story of Canaan, a female elite mecanary, that plays a major role in the major but is not a main character. The Canaan arc was actually written by Kinoko Nasu from Type-Moon and also spawned an anime series, that aired in Japan this summer.

I had the strangest and most awesome moment in video games this year in this game. There are two secret messages from the producer in the game. Both are hidden very well and no normal person would ever find them, without a guide from the internet (Without trophy support I wouldn't have bothered either). For the second secret message, you have to turn off your console at the right moment in the hidden scenario. After turning the console back on, you will be greeted by the message. That is craziest way to hide an easter egg in your game.

428: Fūsa Sareta Shibuya de is one of the best games I have ever played. Of course there is almost no gameplay in the game and no voice overs is kinda harsh nowadays, but overall those things didn't really matter. Sadly it will never get translated and not very many people outside of Japan will experience it.   read


7:07 PM on 11.04.2009  

DLC guessing game results in PSN blockage

Well it was pretty nice of Mike Kennedy from Vogster to post five free download codes on the official European Playstation Blog for Unbound Saga, that is finally getting a digital release in Europe. Only that it actually wasn't.



On PSN you get locked after trying to enter twenty different codes and now a lot of users (including me) have the problem of not being able to enter legit codes. This is pretty shitty and not very amusing. It makes me wonder how many users got the same problem after getting similiar codes via twitter. Of course Mr Kennedy is partly to blame for this, but Sony has to either change their system or at least put some warning in there.   read


5:10 AM on 07.10.2009  

Next up: Breath it out!

OK?! This just happened:
[embed]139256:20491[/embed]
A FUCKING WALKING SIMULATOR!
I guess if you are afraid to leave the house, this would be for you. Although the Eurobeat song at the end totally sold me on this game.

BONUS GAME IDEAS FOR KONAMI:
BREATH IT OUT!
POOP IT OUT!
FUCK HER UP!   read


4:08 PM on 07.01.2009  

Another Code R has no american release date


If you are a Nintendo DS owner, you either have already played or should go and play Hotel Dusk. It's a fantastic adventure game with an incredible story and rather interesting puzzles. A little less known is the first adventure Developer Cing made for Nintendos portable gaming machine with the title Another Code (or Trace Memory in US), that followed the same formula. Although at first glance the story in Another Code looked to be targeted at kids (mainly because the female protagonist is only 13 years old), the story got pretty scary. Most of the puzzles in the game were centered around the touch screen controls and took quite a bit of thinking outside the box to solve.

[embed]138207:20326[/embed]
Now over 4 years after the first game, the sequel was released in Europe last week (Japan release was early this year) under the name Another Code R. The story takes place roughly 3 years after the first game, where Ashley Mizuki Roberts reunited with her father after having a rather dramatich adventure on Blood Edward Island. Of course her father being a scientist and all returned to work and left Ashley to live with her aunt for the past 6 months without ever coming home. Although she is mighty angry with him, she followed his invitation to go camping with him. Unlike the first game this game starts in a rather normal location, but starting with Ashley being robbed of her handbag, you immediately understand, that there are same strange things happening here. For example she remembers things about her coming to the same place with her mother at the age of 3 and everytime she remembers something she totally spaces out.


Like Hotel Dusk the game is very dialogue heavy with no voice acting at all, which is a bit sad because there is enough space on a DVD, but since the dialogues are well written with interesting characters, that all have some hidden secrets, it is easily forgiven. Also the movement between locations is very much streamlined, because you always move on fixed paths. This may seem a bit strange at first, but the game does a very good job of highlighting important things. Of course there are a lot of puzzles in this game, that all use the Wiimote. But instead of simple wagglemotions like in Zack&Wiki, the motion controls and the pointing of the Wiimote are often used in clever ways.

All in all the difficulty level may be a bit too low and some dialogues a bit too stretched out, but the story makes up for everything. Oh, I almost forgot about the graphics, which are gorgeous for Wii standarts. After watching the opening sequence I was already expecting the worst, but the cel-shading looks incredible in this game. Hopefully this game won't follow the same fate as Disaster: Day of Crisis (although that game was actually pretty mediocre) and not get a release in the US, but as of now there is no announcement or release date for the US market.   read


1:13 PM on 06.03.2009  

FUCK YOU KONAMI! What have you done?

Seriously everyone at Konami just go and kill yourself. After 11 years you finally decided to bring my favorite game series over to the US and decided to turn it into an abomination like this:

First the news about Pop'n Music moving over to the Wii came out a little while ago and I was a bit sad, because I wouldn't be able to use my PS2 arcade style controller. I have been waiting for a new home console Pop'n Music for a long time, because the last one came out in 2007, so I was at least a bit happy about a new Pop'n Music game.

BUT I wasn't prepared for this. A strangely stripped down version with Miis dancing in the background? Seriously? Why Konami? Why is this happening?   read


1:01 PM on 05.19.2009  

Rate that dungeon: Persona 3


With this I am starting a series of blog posts about RPG dungeons. While playing Eternal Sonata I realised, that almost every dungeon in that game is shit and I came up with the idea of rating every dungeon in a game on a 1-5 star scale with a small commentary.

So for my first game I chose something easy. Persona 3 has basically only has one very, very large dungeon and some small dungeons on the full moon events. Anyways here we go:

Tartarus:
[embed]132604:19418[/embed]
Tartarus is one big, scary, neverending nightmare. Not only are there 263 floors in this dungeon, but also most of the floors are created randomly. Luckily the random created floors are actually a good thing, because in the game you will have to travel through the same floors over and over again to level up your characters. All in all this is a long and boring dungeon, but there is also nothing to really annoy you while running through it.


Second Full Moon: The Monorail
[embed]132604:19419[/embed]
Although this dungeon is pretty much just a long corridor and although the time limit you face toward the end makes it's pretty entertaining, there is nothing special about this dungeon.


Fourth Full Moon: The Love Hotel
[embed]132604:19420[/embed]
I really like this dungeon. First I thought it would be just running through it and defeating the boss enemy, but after you have beaten the first boss, you are still stuck in there and are being mind controlled. After coming to your senses you have to solve an easy puzzle by destroying the right mirrors before facing the true boss.


Fifth Full Moon: The Weapon Depot
[embed]132604:19421[/embed]
This is just a straight path with a boss at the end. Easy and over soon enough.


The dungeons in Persona 3 aren't great or special, but at least they are pretty straight forward and they aren't annoying.   read


4:24 AM on 04.28.2009  

Get your Noby Noby Boy update!

[embed]130156:18943[/embed]
I wasn't expecting too much from the Noby Noby Boy multiplayer update and was really surprised to see that much added to the game.

Of course there is offline multiplayer for up to four people, but there are also different BGMs for different maps and best of all there is an announcer voice (called Fart Boy on the official page!) telling you what you poop out of your rear end in Japanese.
Finally there are also different designs for the BOY house hair.

[embed]130156:18944[/embed]

If you have NOBY NOBY BOY go and get the update. If you don't have NOBY NOBY BOY get it!

EDIT: You can choose your music via left stick to the left and select. You can also adjust the fart volume there.   read


5:22 AM on 04.22.2009  

Grandia now available on the Japanese PlayStationStore


Finally my favorite RPG has made it to the Japanese PlayStationStore. Grandia has the best battle system ever and a very cute story without moping emo main characters.

Full list of game archives additions this week:
Grandia
Langrisser I&II
Lunatic Dawn Odyssey
TILK - Aoi umi kara kita shojo -
Gakkou wo tsukuro - kocho sensei monogatari

That are 4 RPGs in one week. Hopefully Sony Computer Entertainment America and Europe will finally start releasing more PSOne Classics soon, so more people can check out those fantastic games.   read


3:47 PM on 04.19.2009  

Persona 3 Gaming - The first two weeks (April 7th-19th)

With some folks here on Destructoid I'm doing this project of playing Persona 3 alongside the in-game calendar. Unluckily a project like this is sometimes a bit difficult with a game like Persona 3, because there are quite a few breaks in the game, where you cannot save for days.

[embed]128863:18824[/embed]

April 7th:
Persona 3 starts off with the protagonist experiencing some strange events on his way to his dorm after being transferred to his new school. At the dorm he meets two of his school mates: Yukari Takeba and Mitsuru Kirijo. After a good night's sleep he goes to school together with Yukari. In school you will also meet with Junpei Iori for the first time. Players replaying Persona 3 can see some familiar faces running around town, which is a really nice touch.

April 8th:
Another day at school and in the evening the protagonist will meet with Shuji Ikutsuki, chairman of the boards of your school. In the night there is a quite disturbing cut-scene with Junpei.

April 9th:
After another school day the first full moon of the game is upon us. Akihiko-sempai comes home after being wounded by a shadow. To make matters worse he has lead some shadows to the dorm and our hero has no choice but to run away with Yukari. Once he arrives on the roof, he summons his Persona for the first time in an incredible cut-scene. After a short fight he falls into a coma and only awakes several days later.

April 17th:
Awakening in some hospital Yukari is waiting beside the bed and tells a bit about herself and her father.

April 18th:
Of course there was enough rest the whole week so the protagonist goes to school today. In the evening he decides to join the SEES (short for Specialized Extracurricular Execution Squad). Also in the night there a strange boy makes an appearance in your bed room and talks about your awakening powers.

April 19th:
In the evening Junpei joins the SEES and moves into the dorm. You now have 3 active team members.

Also note to everyone playing:
You cannot save until April 20th.   read


11:41 AM on 04.10.2009  

Loved Shadow of the Colossus? The movie is coming soon!


If action films are my gaming bread and butter, then action-adventures are the video game equivalent -- I love everything about them from the trademark running around and collecting things for people to the well developed storylines. As you may imagine, I was a big fan of Shadow of the Colossus, or Wanda to kyozō as it was called in its original Japanese release.

Watching a film based on Shadow of the Colossus is the kind of thing that I have wet dreams about in the middle of the night, but apparently someone thought it was a good idea other than me. So it's happening. Based on the original 2005 game film and maybe not being worked on by Ueda Fumito, the game's creator, it is being made for the cinema screen.

According to Destructoid, there will be new stuff in the film, you can watch either alone or with friends, and the film is unknown percent complete. I do think a film like this has much hope in being brought here, but I'm going to have to import this one. It's currently slated for a release at some point. Saying DO WANT would be a severe understatement.   read







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